March 4, 2004
CORVALLIS, Ore. (AP) -- Chris Stephens had 18 points to lead Oregon State to a 65-56 win over UCLA on Thursday.
With the win, the Beavers (12-15, 6-11) move into an eighth-place tie with Washington State, which lost 63-61 to No.1 Stanford Thursday night. Oregon State can make the tournament by beating Southern Cal on Saturday.
The Beavers have the tie-breaker with the Cougars in the race to qualify for the eight-team conference tournament.
The Bruins (11-16, 7-10) are faltering, having lost five straight games, but can make the tourney with a win over Oregon Saturday.
The Bruins shot 52 percent from the field, but only took 44 shots to Oregon State's 52.
UCLA held the Beavers' David Lucas to 13 points, four and a half points under his average of 17.5 per game, but the Beavers had four players in double-figures. J.S. Nash added 11 and Angelo Tsagarakis had 10.
Thompson, who was 9-of-12 from the field, was the Bruins' only spark in the first half, scoring 11 points as Oregon State led 28-24 at the half.
UCLA tied the game at 37-37 on Thompson's 3-pointer, but the Beavers put together a 9-0 run, with Chris Stephens converting a three-point play and then pulling up on a fast break and hitting an eight-foot jumper. Tsagarakis drove and scored to make it 46-37.
Thompson hit back-to-back 3-pointers to cut it to 46-43 at 8:55 in the second half, but Stephens answered with a 3-pointer on the other end.
The Bruins got within 54-51 at 4:24 when Ryan Hollins made a pair of free throws. Hollins found Trevor Ariza under the basket at 2:25 to cut the lead to one, but Stephens made a 3, and the Bruins got no closer.
Thompson's seven 3s tied a Gill Coliseum record held by former Beaver guard Gary Payton and current California center Amit Tamir.